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tv   ABC 7 Morning News at 430AM  ABC  February 24, 2011 4:30am-5:00am PST

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that's what's making news this morning. >> get more later on "good morning america." ♪ i'm terry mcsweeney live in novato where a dead body has been found in the house behind me and the woman who lives there has stopped talking to the police. but maybe it's not what it seems. >> in the headlines, the san francisco police commission votes to allow the police department to look into the use of tasers by officers. >> good morning. a live look downtown san francisco. all is quiet right now with the anticipation of the rain and snow is here and we'll talk about where it is and how much we're going to get. >> there's road work to be on the lookout for. caltrain is working on the
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dumbarton and hayward. >> and the search for survivors of new zealand's devastating earthquake continues. the hope begins to fade for finding many more people alive. it's thursday at 4:30. i'm kristen sze. >> i'm eric thomas. topping our news, novato police and federal agents will be back in a north bay backyard today to resume the search for a body that appears to be buried there. the home belongs to an elderly couple and the husband is missing. terry mcsweeney is live in novato. terry, even one of the participants says it's like an alfred hitchcock movie. >> take a look at the excitement last night as crews were in that backyard digging up the backyard and underneath that blue tarp you might be able to see there may well be the body of a man who lived in this house and was
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reported missing by neighbors a couple weeks ago. 74-year-old dale smith lived here with his wife evelyn. she is in her fifties and now she's no longer answering questions posed by police. >> the case is full of unusual circumstances so i'm not gonna comment whether that is suspicion itself but you can draw your own conclusions. >> january a neighbor approached me again and said she talked to evelyn and evelyn talked about dale in the past tense. that alerted her. >> here's more questions for you. neighbors haven't seen smith since september. didn't report him missing though until just a couple weeks ago. they also say smith was a retired carpenter who married evelyn 15 years ago and that he had cancer. evelyn's attorney is saying that there is a body back there, but
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it may not be a murder is what he gets down to saying, is that there may have been a natural death, if so did she bury him in that backyard. was it a natural death? was it a homicide? whole lot of questions out here. answers later on when police and f.b.i. return. terry mcsweeney, abc 7 news. >> thank you. the san francisco police commission voted 6-1 last night to allow the police department to now look into the use of tasers by officers. it comes a year after shooting down a similar proposal. last march the commission voted 4-3 against the request by then police chief gorge gascon to study the use of tasers. interim police chief says they will study the taser issue and present finding in 90 days. >> this afternoon state
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regulators are voting on implementing state regulations for utilities operating natural pipelines in the state. the california public utilities commission will consider new reporting requirements for operators whose pipeline pressures accidentally spiked above the legal limits but critics say the changes would not do enough because they would apparently not require pg&e or other utilities to notify regulators if natural gas levels exceed legal limits during planned pressure surges. assembly man jeffrey hill says new requirements would allow pg&e to continue the same activities that could have caused the san bruno pipeline to weaken. >> in new zealand hopes are fading for finding survivors in christ church. the death toll now stands at 98 and more than 200 others are missing in the aftermath of the
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6.3 magnitude quake. she was escorted behind police lines for a look at the devastation. >> christ church is known as the garden city, a mixture of the modern and ranged with green. now the garden city looks like it's been fawned, looted and pulverized into rubbish. they have the largest loss of life. not only did this building collapse but it was followed by fire and rescue workers believe there might be 120 people all beneath that rubble. there are search and rescue teams working the site but they're not calling it a rescue operation, they're calling it recovery. >> the christ church cathedral is fronted by a plaza that would usually be filled with hundreds of tourists and locals. many scale the steps of the steeple for a view of the city. the steeple and the bells that used to call out every hour
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collapsed. at least a dozen people are presumed dead. rescue teams from australia, japan, the u.s. search with the latest equipment through the rubble. they hear nothing. in christ church, new zealand, abc 7 news. >> this morning a 70-year-old man is recovering from injuries he suffered in a wrong-way crash on interstate 880 in oakland. the chp says the elderly man was traveling westbound on interstate 80 last night when he made a u-turn on the bridge toll plaza. he got into a head-on crash and had to be extricated from the car and taken to island hospital. the accident slowed traffic on the freeway in the area for more than an hour. >> oakland police are hoping someone will help identify a sexual assault suspect captured on surveillance video. this man is suspecteled of beating and sexually assaulting a woman near oakland's china town on february 7th. detectives are trying to determine if the attack is
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linked to three other assaults on women late last year. they happened just east of lake merritt not far from the scene of this assault. if you recognize this man, call oakland police. >> this morning in sacramento, governor jerry brown will address the state's budget conference committee after a new taxpayer caucus yesterday aimed at stopping anymore tax increases. the caucus may be willing to support governor brown's proposal for temporary taxes for five years if he also gives taxpayers the option of cutting taxes by the same amount. >> the message is that tax increases are counterproductive, tax increases take us the wrong direction. >> we could raise an additional seven, almost $8 billion in tax revenue for california. >> also yesterday democratic assemblyman introduced a tax for high income earners and
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additional 1%, the same social programs that the poor rely on. california faces a $26.6 billion budget deficit. >> bart directors meet today but sources say there will be no vote taken on the job status as general manager dorothy dugger. the board had voted 5-4 in a closed session two weeks ago to ask dugger to step down but that motion was later rescinded due to concerns it violated the state's open meeting laws. several people familiar with the board say the omission of dug gar's status of today's agenda indicates she will not be officially asked to resign but is negotiating a departure on her own terms. >> time for a check on the forecast. we're still all waiting to see what's going to happen with that snow. >> i know. you're all smiles, giddy over the prospect of getting snow. >> i am! the interesting thing is we could be driving through snow on the way to work tomorrow, especially if you drive through the east bay hills and some of
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the higher elevations around 1,000 feet. live doppler 7 hd shows our system, the first signs of it still well to the north. still think we're going to see rain at noon. that much of the forecast hasn't changed compared to yesterday. we talked about yesterday, it is warmer this morning. fremont exactly the same everyone 1 to 9 degrees warmer because of the cloud cover. temperatures, everybody in the 40s except los gatos 37. 40 mountain view, fremont and santa rosa to 48 half moon bay. this afternoon 49. 48 cloverdale where we'll start about 10:00 this morning seeing some of the snow above a thousand feet in the north bay. we'll have to wait until later on this evening for that to hit the higher elevations. tomorrow morning much more interesting than this morning. once it passes, a high freeze is
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likely, possibly even san francisco saturday night into sunday morning. good morning, megan. >> good morning. if you're getting ready to leave the house, road work is the only thing that might slow you down. let's start on the dumbarton bridge with two lanes blocked on the menlo park side till 5:00 this morning. caltran's working in hayward. the ramp from 880 to highway 92 is closed in both directions. that should be cleared up by 5:00 as well. let's go outside for a live look in walnut creek. this is 680. no delays heading south bound here but you will find road work in both directions of 680 heading to the danville area till about 6:00 this morning. eric, kristen. >> megan, thanks a lot. >> pain at the pump. how the threat of a bidding war could push bay area gas prices into unchartered territory. >> the unrest in libya is causing gas prices to soar. more casualties as libyan
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good morning, everyone. 4:43 on the abc 7 morning news. you're looking live at the bay bridge. there's no snow right now. no snow anywhere right now but there will be. i don't know if i'm giddy. people normally say giddy about eric thomas but i'm happy to see what it's going to look like. >> what are you drinking, buddy? >> i have the kristen sze party. >> you do. libya, we're getting heavy casualty reports as moammer gadhafi attacked protestors. sanctions against libya to stop
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qaddafi from attacking his own people. jenelle wang with the latest. >> kristen, these sanctions include no fly zones and proposals to oil companies to stop operations in libya, the world's 12th largest oil exporter. demonstrators are gaining control in key cities but a huge cost is estimated. 300 people has been killed but it's believed that number is much higher because the libya government is making it very difficult for foreign media to get information. qaddafi still maintenance control of the capital city of tripoli. he has ordered killing of protestors and an army unit life to qaddafi used automatic weapons to kill protestors holed up in a mosque in a city west of tripoli. >> the suffering and bloodshed is outrageous and it is unacceptable. so with threats and orders to
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shoot peaceful protestors and further punish the people of libya. >> there is word another military pilot disobeyed orders to bomb the heart of the uprising and bailed out of his war plane. this is the third pilot this week to defect. another top aide to qaddafi has deflected to egypt. the unrest in libya is causing oil prices to skyrocket, $100 a barrel for the first time in three years. yesterday's increase could mean an extra 8 cents per gallon. if prices reach the previous peak of $150, the u.s. could fall back into a recession. jenelle wang, abc 7 news. >> thank you very much. it's 4:45 now. >> coming up, the president's about-face over same sex marriage and what it could mean for california couples waiting to wed. >> t minus nine hours and counting, the "discovery"'s final mission in space. >> and traditional or daring.
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almost as big of the buzz at the academy awards are
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>>welcome back. check out the temperatures across the country. great falls, 8 degrees below zero. portland 35. guess where our weather's coming from tomorrow? yeah, from up there. dallas and new orleans, 75 and 78. the yellow is back in -- on the airport delays. that's where severe weather is possible so flight delayings dallas, houston, little rock, oklahoma city and memphis and even st. louis. if anything develops, our flight tracker will have it, abc7news.com. >> 4:48 now. the decision by president obama to stop defending the constitutionality of a federal law that bans recognition of a gay marriage is being praised by a gay rights activist in the bay
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area and vilified by those on the other side. leslie brinkley has more. >> an impromptu celebration materialized in castro. gay marriage advocates long opposed the defensive marriage act, the defined marriage only between a man and a woman. it was passed in 1996 that literally keeps gays and lesbians and couples from having over 1,138 federal rights. >> with the attorney general writing to the speaker of the house, rights for gay and lesbian couples will open up on the federal level from social security to pensions to healthcare. >> the amount from the administration is fitting with the bipartisan majority in congress and the people in 90% of the states. >> this is a huge watershed
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moment where president obama is fulfilling his promise to insure that all americans are treated equally. >> a move by the president will certainly reinvigorate the national debate on the issue in every state, including california, where prop 8 is still unresolved. leslie brinkley, abc 7 news. >> about nine hours the space shuttle "discovery" will lift off for its final launch. a live look at the kennedy space center. the discovery sitting there on the launch pad. the launch has been delayed nearly 4 months because of the repairs to external tanks and support beams. it will be the 39th voyage into space. it spent 262 days in orbit in its 26-year career. it used "discovery" for the first accident flight following columbia. it helped deliver telescopes to
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orbit. "endeavour" will make its final flight in april with atlantis with its final space mission during the summer. >> and john glenn made his flight, his return to outerspace in the "discovery" as well. a superstar in the fleet. >> i wonder if he's going to be there today. >> time for a look at our weather forecast. she said giddy. i'm thinking of something more manly. >> manly? >> happy. >> happy? >> what's a manly happy. >> bemused. >> let's take a look, see what's going on outside. it's 4:51 and a pretty quiet morning in san francisco and all the way across the bay bridge over towards oakland and berkeley. let's take a look at live doppler 7 hd. over the last three hours the storm is moving, the individual cells moving more west to east but that whole broken shield you
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see right there will be moving south. in fact, we could have snow as early as the next hour or so in lake county. let's get you caught up on everything. we have a went weather advisory from 4:00 today until 10 a.m. tomorrow morning. that's for the north bay mountains. so accumulating snow could start at 4:00 this afternoon from a thousand feet all the way up. we could get over or more than i should say 6 inches above 2500 feet. lake county, it could start snowing anytime there. 1 to 3 inches clear lake. tough on 29 and 101. and back around the east bay hills, the diablo range and the santa cruz mountains -- sorry about that -- we have 10:00 this evening until 10:00 tomorrow evening. we could get more than 9 inches above 3,000 feet and accumulating snow down to 1,000 feet. that's starting at 10:00 this evening. for now we have low to mid-40s around the bay except los gatos at 37.
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around the monterey bay upper 30s to near 40. even monterey at 49. so we have rain today. heaviest during the evening hours. rain and snow showers tonight through tomorrow. and that accumulating snow above 1,000 feet tomorrow during the day and during the evening hours. all right. you can see the rain shield develop during the afternoon hours. just about all of us being touched by rain before the evening commute. so this morning quiet, this evening not so much. temperatures the low 50s. we have upper 40s around antioch and cloverdale. 41 clear lake to 46 ukiah. a little breezy this afternoon too with that cold front coming through. temperatures around the monterey bay where you will be touched by rain in the evening hourses are also. how scattered it becomes tonight. low to mid-40s around the bay. that's the key, the timing. the coldest of the air that will bring that snow level down to 1,000 feet comes in right after the cold front moves through.
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and that's going to be tomorrow afternoon. all right. here we are during the morning hours. you can see the rain move in about 5:00 just about all of us dealing with it. the heaviest of the rain during the evening and the early overnight hours. 5:00 in the morning, another push of heavier rain and you can see the cold air come in and the snow levels drop by 9:00 friday morning but you also see the rain start to taper. we could get a half inch to an inch of rain along with all that snow. it will be clear saturday afternoon with temperatures in the mid-40s. megan, do we have a new crash? >> we do. san francisco, southbound 101 on the paul avenue off-ramp. it does have one lane of traffic on the off-ramp. our overnight road work should be cleared up within about 10 minutes. no problem here making your way through the tolls and heading into san francisco. also along the east shore freeway, a live look at
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interstate 80. these headlights are moving westbound and the drive time from the carquinez bridge to the maze just 19 minutes. go to our website abc7news.com and click on the traffic link. kristen? >> megan, thanks a lot. it's 4:55. hollywood is rolling out the red carpet for the academy awards but long after the winners are announced america will talk about the best and worst-dressed stars at the big show. taking us back in time to take a look at oscar fashion fascinations. >> when it comes to the oscars, some classics come to mind. ever the pretty woman, julia roberts owned the oscar and the red carpet in 2001. a vision in green, nicole kidman outshined tom cruise in 2007. halle berry's gown was just as
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memorable as her touching speech. then not who are they wearing but rather what were they thinking! take this golden black ensemble. in 2001, way before swans were considered oscar contenders. and who can forget the grandam of couture herself. the concoction dominated the '80s. this year there's one actress willing to take risk. mismatched shoes and interesting gown broughtç a different kinf wow factor to the golden globes. abc news, hollywood. >> what else are they gonna talk about, huh! . you can watch this sunday. coverage begins on the red carpet at 2 p.m.. the awards show begins at 5 p.m.
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followed by a awards special. tune in the next morning when we can review all the fashions. >> and the winners. don't forget about that. just about 4:57. san jose police officers go on the offensive. next on abc 7 at 5 a.m. what they're doing to try and stop a drastic plan to cut jobs. >> what's in a name? in san jose, apparently a lot. i'm amy hollyfield. i'll explain coming up. >> a medical marvel. the jolt of electricity that promises a solid night's rest for people who struggleeeeeeeeee
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